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Fatwas / Miscellaneous / The ruling of massage

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What is the ruling on body massage? حــكم الـتـدلـيك


All praise is due to Allah alone, and may the Salah and Salam of Allah be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family and his companions.

To answer your question, we say while seeking the success from Allah:

Body massage is of two types:

(1) Therapeutic Massage: This type of massages is recommended by doctors to treat weak muscles or particular health issues. This type is permissible because it is considered a medical treatment but one should make sure not to uncover or allow touching more than the area needs to be massaged, and to ensure the area is uncovered only for the time needed to finish the massage. This is because Allah, the Most High, has ordered us to cover our ‘awrah so He said (interpretation of the meaning): {Tell the believing men to reduce [some] of their vision and guard their private parts. That is purer for them. Indeed, Allah is Acquainted with what they do…And tell the believing women to reduce [some] of their vision and guard their private parts}[Quran 24:30-31] and He described the believers by:{ And they who guard their private parts. Except from their wives or those that their right hands possess, for indeed, they will not be blamed} [Quran 23:5-6] It was narrated that Bahz ibn Hakeem said, my father told me, from my grandfather, who said: “I said, ‘O Messenger of Allah, what about our ‘awrah (private parts)?’ He said, ‘Conceal your ‘awrah from everyone except your wife and female slaves whom your right hand possesses.’ He said, ‘What about a man with another man?’ He said, ‘If you can manage not to let anyone see it, then do so.’ I said, ‘What if a man is on his own?’ He said, ‘Allah is more deserving that you should be modest before Him.’” Reported by Ahmad (19530), Abu Dawd (4017) and al-Tirmidhi (2769) and the chain of narrators of this hadith is good and al-Bukhari reported part of the hadith. It was also narrated that Abu Sa‘id al-Khudri (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (may the Salah and Salam of Allah be upon him) said: “No man should look at the ‘awrah of another man, and no woman should look at the ‘awrah of another woman. No man should lie down with another man beneath a single cover, and no woman should lie down with another woman beneath a single cover” Reported by Muslim (338) and it indicates that it is forbidden for others to touch the ‘awrah of another person directly by any part of the body.

(2) Non-Therapeutic Massage: The purpose of this type is to increase circulation and promote relaxation. This type is allowed provided that the a’warh is neither touched nor uncovered and it does not cause the person to be aroused or tempted. It is allowed to be paid for this kind of message.

However, I recommend to use manual massages tools instead of having someone to give you a massage because it will protect the ‘awrah from being touched or seen and avert any sexual desires.

And Allah knows best.

Your brother,

Prof. Khalid al-Musleh


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